Huckleberry Finn opens with a warning from its author that misinterpreting readers will be shot. Despite the danger, readers have been approaching the novel from such diverse critical perspectives for 120 years that it is both commonly taught and frequently banned, for a variety of reasons. Studying both the novel and its critics with an emphasis on cultural context will help students develop analytical tools essential for navigating this work and other American controversies. This lesson asks students to combine internet historical research with critical reading. Then students will produce several writing assignments exploring what readers see in Huckleberry Finn and why they see it that way.
Most historians agree that the world has never come closer to nuclear war than it did during a thirteen-day period in October 1962, after the revelation that the Soviet Union had stationed several medium-range ballistic missiles in Cuba. This lesson will examine how this crisis developed, how the Kennedy administration chose to respond, and how the situation was ultimately resolved.
American foreign policy continues to resonate with the issues surrounding the debate over U.S. entry into the League of Nations-collective security versus national sovereignty, idealism versus pragmatism, the responsibilities of powerful nations, the use of force to accomplish idealistic goals, the idea of America. Understanding the debate over the League and the consequences of its ultimate failure provides insight into international affairs in the years since the end of the Great War.
This lesson plan looks at the major ideas in the Declaration of Independence, their origins, the Americans' key grievances against the King and Parliament, their assertion of sovereignty, and the Declaration's process of revision.
This feature outlines the context of The Seneca Falls Convention of 1848 which produced the "Declaration of Sentiments," a MI exemplar for grades 11 CCR. This document made a bold argument, modeled on the language and logic of the Declaration of Independence that American women should be given civil and political rights equal to those of American men, including the right to vote.
Americans elect a president through the state-by-state mechanism of the Electoral College rather than direct nationwide popular vote. Today, all but two states award all of their electoral votes to the statewide winner.
During the Early Modern era (1450"“1750), the expansion in maritime trade and the incorporation of the Americas into worldwide exchanges meant the world became increasingly interconnected. These connections led to a greater need for diplomatic relations with other states. Like many modern institutions, diplomacy as we know it today had its origins during this period.
Oral History Interviews that bring students together with veterans help to foster empathy and make history come alive. This lessons offers a step-by-step guide to doing an oral history project with Vietnam War Veterans.
Students examine the divided nature of Raskolnikov's character and personality. Then they uncover the divided natures of other characters"”a fact that becomes increasingly evident as the novel progresses to go beyond character analysis to comprehend Dostoyevsky's underlying themes. What does the novel imply about human nature? Dostoevsky clearly perceived that people are neither simple nor easily classified; they are often torn in opposite directions by forces both inside of and outside of themselves, sometimes with catastrophic results.
Students will listen to a brief biography, view photographs of the March on Washington, hear a portion of King's "I Have a Dream" speech, and discuss what King's words mean to them.
By closely reading historical documents and attempting to interpret them, students consider how Arthur Miller interpreted the facts of the Salem witch trials and how he successfully dramatized them in his play, "The Crucible." As they explore historical materials, such as the biographies of key players (the accused and the accusers) and transcripts of the Salem Witch trials themselves, students will be guided by aesthetic and dramatic concerns: In what ways do historical events lend themselves (or not) to dramatization? What makes a particular dramatization of history effective and memorable?
A complete listing of EDSITEment's lessons on the causes, the course and the consequences of the American Revolution and Independence
We are naturally curious about the lives (and deaths) of authors, especially those, such as Edgar Allan Poe and Ambrose Bierce, who have left us with so many intriguing mysteries. But does biographical knowledge add to our understanding of their works? And if so, how do we distinguish between the accurate detail and the rumor; between truth and exaggeration? In this lesson, students become literary sleuths, attempting to separate biographical reality from myth. They also become careful critics, taking a stand on whether extra-literary materials such as biographies and letters should influence the way readers understand a writer's texts.
Why was the Emancipation Proclamation important? While the Civil War began as a war to restore the Union, not to end slavery, by 1862 President Abraham Lincoln came to believe that he could save the Union only by broadening the goals of the war. Students can explore the obstacles and alternatives America faced in making the journey toward "a more perfect Union."
We know General George Washington crossed the Delaware River to attack Britain's Hessian army at Trenton on Christmas night in 1776. At the mention of this event, most Americans imagine a heroic Washington standing in a small boat. But, did this happen? How has the art of Emanuel Leutze influenced the telling of history?
Emily Dickinson's poetry often reveals a child-like fascination with the natural world. She writes perceptively of butterflies, birds, and bats and uses lucid metaphors to describe the sky and the sea.
In this lesson students will examine the various visions of three active agents in the creation and management of Great Britain's empire in North America: British colonial leaders and administrators, North American British colonists, and Native Americans.
In this lesson, students will look behind the story at the historical, social, and cultural circumstances that shape the narrative throughout Esperanza Rising. The lesson also invites students to contemplate some of the changes Esperanza undergoes as she grows into a responsible young woman and the contradictions that she experiences.
Practice working with primary documents by comparing accounts of the Chicago Fire and testing the credibility of a Civil War diary.
This lesson plan is the third in the "Incredible Bridges: Poets Creating Community" series. It provides a video of the United State Poet Laureate, Juan Felipe Herrera, reading the poem "Every Day We Get More Illegal" and a companion lesson with a sequence of activities for use with secondary students before, during, and after reading to help them enter and experience the poem.